I’d like to start off with a question. How many of you have woken up after a night out, not only with a sore head, but also with a huge hole your purse or wallet? I can certainly put my hand up to this one and I’ll bet I'm not alone.
If you're trying to build a solid financial future, secure your financial independence, retire early, or get out of debt, if you keep falling into this trap, you're shooting yourself in the foot, so you need to do something about it. The good news is I'm not going tell you to stop going out, because where's the fun in that? However, I am going to give you three things you can do on a night out to spend dramatically less money.
Tip 1 - Pay with Cash
In this day and age it's so easy to hand over your credit or debit card at the bar, often using contactless payments, and you’re able to keep buying rounds and rounds of drinks without realising how much you’ve spent until you either check your statement or look at the receipts the next day.
However, paying with cash changes everything. If you're going out, work out how much you can afford to spend and take that money out of the cash point or ATM before you go. Not only will that mean you'll have a very clear idea how quickly that money is disappearing as the evening goes on, but it will also stop you from overspending. Full stop.
Tip 2 – Watch out for Peer Pressure
When we go out with friends, typically the booze starts to flow and it's very easy to get pressured into having more drinks, or spending more money on things, because everybody else is. After all, none of us like to look stingy or stupid. However, there is a better way to handle this and that is to pay your way, but no more.
If you're like me, I would always be the first person to buy a round, and then buy the next round of drinks, without really thinking about what I was spending, in effect subsidising others (some of whom can be very happy not to pay their way). Making this change was not easy, but it was this one habit which made a radical difference to how much I spent on a night out.
Tip 3 – Remember, the Barperson is not your friend
Most bar staff are not just employed to serve drinks, they are tasked with getting us to buy more of them, which they do via very clever bar promotions which work, more often than not, because alcohol impairs our judgement and causes us to make snap decisions based on emotions rather than intellect. So, next time you go to the bar and you’re offered a cheap shot, double, or extra drink, train your brain to automatically say no, rather than yes. This can take a while to do but, believe me, both your wallet and your body will appreciate it.
These three tips are very simple but are also incredibly powerful, so way not try them next time you’re hitting the town? Trust me, you won’t regret it.
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